The zebrafish xenograft models for investigating cancer and cancer therapeutics

John T. Gamble, Daniel J. Elson, Juliet A. Greenwood, Robyn L. Tanguay, Siva K. Kolluri

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


In order to develop new cancer therapeutics, rapid, reliable, and relevant biological models are required to screen and validate drug candidates for both efficacy and safety. In recent years, the zebrafish (Danio rerio) has emerged as an excellent model organism suited for these goals. Larval fish or immunocompromised adult fish are used to engraft human cancer cells and serve as a platform for screening potential drug candidates. With zebrafish sharing ~80% of disease-related orthologous genes with humans, they provide a low cost, high-throughput alternative to mouse xenografts that is relevant to human biology. In this review, we provide background on the methods and utility of zebrafish xenograft models in cancer research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number252
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2021


  • Cancer therapeutics
  • Drug discovery
  • Drug screening
  • Toxicity testing
  • Xenograft
  • Zebrafish

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'The zebrafish xenograft models for investigating cancer and cancer therapeutics'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this